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Nut Milk Recipes

Pacifies Vatta and Pitta, aggravates Kapha

I love me some good old fashioned homemade milks. 

Let’s be real here. The ingredient list on store bought milk alternatives? A little ridiculous to me. If I’m going to be (over)paying for store bought, I’d like to at least get a satisfying return for my value. I don’t make my own milk products because I’m scared of the store bought fillers though, fear doesn’t play a role in my choices anymore. I make certain products at home because it feels good. It feels good to spend less money for higher yield and quality ingredients. It feels good to know that my oat milk consists of “milked” oats. (ok so if that’s weird to you then water + oats) It feels good to see my toddler having fun whilst participating in the process of what’s going to “make his tummy happy.” And as I have evolved from making decisions out of fear, I tend to enjoy making my choices by way of “what feels good.”

So, Why Milk Alternatives?

Personally, I don’t love the taste of milk. (Unless you’re talking creamer in my morning coffee mmmm) I don’t mind using milk products in certain dishes, though I would prefer raw, and unpasteurized, which can be a little more challenging to source (and $$). More so than my not having a preference for dairy milk, I simply love the benefits that alternatives provide, and use them in tandem with other dairy products. I’m going to share three of my favorite recipes with you today: Oat, Coconut, and Almond. 

Ayurveda

Ayur (life) Veda (science) or “The Science of Life.” An Indian medical tradition that is more than 5,000 years wise Ayurveda is a way of life that sees food as medicine, and says “you’re not what you eat, but what you digest.” Yogapedia (how fun is that?!) tells us that from this holistic science’s perspective “The first principle is that the body and mind are interconnected, and the second principle is that the mind is powerful enough to heal the body. The body is cured of illnesses only when one’s awareness of the self expands.” A central aspect to Ayurveda constitutes bringing into harmony the three energies referred to as “doshas,” which you can think of as a kind of personality type for your health. Pacifying a Vata dosha would look like warm/calming foods to balance cold/anxious tendencies (the primary dosha for all women in the Postpartum period.) Pitta would look like cooling qualities to harmonize fiery/on-the-move types and Kapha pacifying would look like bitter and astringent foods to balance heaviness/ sluggishness.  To learn more about Ayurveda and your dosha you can visit Dr. John Immel (Asheville Local!) of Joyful Bellies. (presence both online and in person) 

Oat Milk 

Ingredients:

1 cup rolled oats 

4 cups water

Pinch of Sea Salt 

Optional: 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, sweetener of choice: 2 dates / 2 Tbsp maple syrup or local honey / or Stevia drops to taste

Method:

Blend / Strain milk through nut milk bag, or sieve 

Ayurvedic benefits: 

Suitable for those with nut allergies, oat milk has a grounding effect.

Almond Milk 

Ingredients:

1 cup almonds, soaked overnight

4 cups water 

Pinch of sea salt 

Optional: 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, sweetener of choice: 2 dates / 2 Tbsp maple syrup or local honey / or Stevia drops to taste

Method:

Discard soaking water and rinse almonds. Blend / Strain milk through nut milk bag, or sieve 

Ayurvedic Benefits:

Sweet and warming. High in protein. Lubricates the skin and supports our tissues. 

Coconut Milk

Ingredients: 

1 thai coconut* or meat from coconut

2-4 cups water

Optional: 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, sweetener of choice: 2 dates / 2 Tbsp maple syrup or local honey / or Stevia drops to taste

Method:

Blend / Strain milk through nut milk bag, or sieve. Alternatively you can blend until creamy & leave pulp in to thicken smoothies, etc.

Ayurvedic Benefits:

Sweet and cooling, it provides strength and is anti inflammatory.

*Now this is fun – hacking your own coconut. This is my favorite method because it includes the sweet coconut water, as opposed to the meat only (which is harder) when purchased separately. You can follow directions like this: https://www.thefullhelping.com/how-to-open-a-young-thai-coconut-step-by-step-pictures-and-instructions/ 
The only difference is that I continue on to cut the outside part of the coconut off and crack it in half with my knife. You can easily search for how to do this online if you think you’ll have trouble. But don’t let the hard work deter you! It’s a fun project, especially if you have any littles to watch and treat with a sip of fresh juice when the job is done. 

Enjoy!

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